Grand Rapids Community College has a new interim athletic director, David Selmon, following the quiet resignation of former athletic director, Bill Firn, in May.
Firn announced his resignation in an email to coaches, friends and colleagues at GRCC to inform them of his decision.
“I am writing to all of you to let you know that I have decided to resign from my role as GRCC Athletic Director,” he wrote. “I wanted to send this note to all of you to let you know how much I appreciate all you have done for me and the athletic department. The past four years have been amazing. Please respect this decision as it is best for me and my family at this time. I also want to apologize for the abruptness of this announcement, however I have thought about this for quite some time.”
The resignation followed a successful year for GRCC athletics. The program received the 2019-2020 Michigan Community College Athletic Association Charlie Chanter All-Sports Award, which goes to the college program most successful in a variety of sports.
While athletics will be handled differently this year, Selmon is excited to be working with the department again after previously coaching men’s basketball at the college for 20 years. Selmon retired from coaching in 2015 with a 416-136 record, leading GRCC to the 1995 National Championship game.
Selmon started at GRCC in the Student Life department 31 years ago. Currently he is the Adult Education Director and the Associate Dean of K-12 Recruitment, with an emphasis on Grand Rapids Public Schools.
“It’s definitely a challenging time,” said Selmon. “GRCC is following the national guidelines for the protection of students, that is the first and foremost number one goal.”
Student athletes and coaches are being screened daily to lower the risk of outbreaks. GRCC is limiting athletics to only outdoor sports in the fall semester, which will only be cross country.
Student athletes will still be allowed to practice in the fall, just not as frequently as they would have been.
“They’re going to still practice on a limited basis,” said Selmon. “They would usually practice five days a week, we’re moving them down to three days a week with no back to back practices.”
Selmon hopes that along with Mike Roche, GRCC’s athletic trainer, and others working in the Fieldhouse that they can work together to have a successful season.
Selmon’s main goal is to get through the season without any cases of COVID and keep students and coaches safe.
“I think we got a pretty good plan,” said Selmon. “We think we have a good protocol in place to try to get us through the season, but make no mistake about it, like any other program if there is an outbreak, we will quarantine.”
While Selmon isn’t looking to become the permanent athletic director, he is happy to help out.
“I’ve been away from it for 12 years,” said Selmon. “I’m just happy to be back into it temporarily. I’ve been having fun, this is not work for me. I really enjoy athletics and I’m looking forward to the season.”